Advisory from the City of Milwaukee Commissioner of Health
On November 26, 2021, the World Health Organization (“WHO”) declared the new COVID B.1.1.529 variant, named Omicron, a variant of concern because it has a large number of mutations and preliminary evidence suggests an increased risk of reinfection and spread across the world, including to the United States.
As of November 30, 2021, zero specimens processed within the Milwaukee Health Department Laboratory have been identified as Omicron. However, in anticipation of future identification of this variant in Milwaukee, and due to the burden of positive COVID-19 cases remaining in the extreme transmission category, the Milwaukee Health Department hereby provides notice that all individuals, regardless of vaccination status or past COVID-19 infection, should wear a mask at all times when indoors in a public setting.
This advisory does not apply in cases where an individual is actively performing an activity that cannot be done while wearing a face covering such as sleeping; actively eating or drinking; practicing or playing a competitive sport; or performing, including but not limited to playing music, delivering a speech to an audience seated at least six feet away, and acting in a theater.
COVID-19 infection is transmitted predominately by inhalation of respiratory droplets and studies show that masks and face coverings block the release of respiratory droplets into the environment and can also reduce the wearer’s exposure to droplets from others because COVID-19 viral particles spread between people more readily indoors and when people are closer together for longer periods of time indoors.
The WHO and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have advised all individuals to take measures to reduce their risk of COVID-19, especially the Delta and Omicron variants, including proven public health and social measures such as wearing well-fitting masks, hand hygiene, physical distancing, improving ventilation of indoor spaces, avoiding crowded spaces, and getting vaccinated.
- MTEA Statement on Passage of Mask Requirement by Milwaukee Common Council - Milwaukee Teachers’ Education Association - Jan 18th, 2022
- City of Milwaukee Weekly COVID-19 Update - City of Milwaukee Health Department - Jan 14th, 2022
- DHS Now Auto-Importing Positive COVID-19 Test Results - Wisconsin Department of Health Services - Jan 14th, 2022
- National Guard Deploying to Hospitals, Nursing Homes - Jeramey Jannene - Jan 13th, 2022
- City Moving Toward Cash Vaccination Incentives, Free Rapid Tests - Jeramey Jannene - Jan 13th, 2022
- MKE County: COVID-19 Deaths Rising in Milwaukee - Graham Kilmer - Jan 11th, 2022
- Gov. Evers and DHS Announce Rate Increase to Help Support Healthcare Workforce in the Midst of COVID-19 Case Surge - Gov. Tony Evers - Jan 11th, 2022
- Evers Administration, DHS, DPI Remind Schools of Support, Resources Available to Help Keep Kids and Educators Safe in School as Omicron Spreads - Wisconsin Department of Health Services - Jan 10th, 2022
- Milwaukee Health Department to Offer Extended Use of Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 Vaccines - City of Milwaukee Health Department - Jan 10th, 2022
- Rep. Brostoff Statement on Assembly Bill 309 - State Rep. Jonathan Brostoff - Jan 10th, 2022
Read more about Coronavirus Pandemic here
Recent Press Releases by City of Milwaukee Health Department
Masks will be available at Milwaukee Health Centers and Milwaukee Public Libraries